MPA or MPP?

Which is right for you?

Both the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) are strong, valuable, recognized degrees.  "What distinguishes the two degrees?"

At GW, the basic structures (and amount of coursework) are virtually identical. However, the degrees do have distinctions in terms of the course emphases and recommended fields of concentration, as summarized below.

Parallel structures

  • Both: 40 total credit hours of courses
  • Both: The same Research Methods and Applied Statistics course
  • Both: Can be completed by students attending either part-time or full-time
  • Both: Graduates with MPA and MPP degrees find themselves well-equipped for careers throughout all levels of government, within associations and advocacy groups, across the nonprofit sector and in the private sector.

 

Master of Public Administration
Core courses require more classes in administration and leadership and cover more about management.

Master of Public Policy
Core courses require more classes in economics and statistics and cover more about policy research and analysis.

Fields of Concentration

  • Budget and Public Finance
  • Federal Policy, Politics and Management
  • Homeland Security and Emergency Management Policy
  • International Development Management
  • Managing State and Local Governments
  • Nonprofit Management
  • Policy Analysis and Evaluation
  • Public-Private Policy and Management


In addition, any of the fields in the MPP are possible in the MPA. You may (in consultation with your advisor and approval from the MPA program) design a specially tailored and/or interdisciplinary policy field.

Fields of Concentration

  • Budget and Public Finance
  • Education Policy
  • Environmental Policy
  • Health Policy
  • International Development Policy
  • Natural Security and Foreign Policy
  • Program Evaluation and Analysis
  • Regulatory Policy
  • Social Policy
  • Urban Policy


You may (in consultation with their advisor and approval from the MPP program) design a specially tailored and/or interdisciplinary policy field.